Paying down debt

by - 9:40 AM

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to discuss finance on this blog but it has consumed my mind lately, so what the hell. My office just went through a pretty significant layoff, so for a while I was uncertain if I would still have a job. I quickly realized my savings wouldn’t last me very long.

Fortunately, I still have a job (and a paycheck!) but this recent scare has me rethinking how I spend money. I have a couple months’ savings accrued – but it’s advised to have a minimum of three. Some experts even advise on having up to 8 months. Gulp. How can you ever save that much?! I don’t live paycheck to paycheck, but I still feel like I’m a long ways from that goal.

My debt is pretty minimal (compared to most). I was fortunate and got through college debt free. I did work part-time to pay living expenses, and my tuition was covered. I have 17 car payments left to make and then it’s completely mine. My credit card debt is very small but, after calculating, it would take me 4 years to pay it off if I only make the minimum payments – and don’t accrue anymore. Say what?!

I should also note that I contribute to my 401k, so I take advantage of my employer’s matching offer.

My biggest focus point is to increase my credit card payments so I have that off my plate. I hate paying interest on debt I collected on odds and ends over the past few years.

Do you have tips for budgeting and paying down debt? I’d love to hear it! I know most of us are all in the same boat and it can be overwhelming and confusing.

change jar
via Heather Dyan

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